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Sandile Ntshingila (pictured) had a great job in IT. But he put that on the line to chase his dream of becoming a TV presenter.
You would think after failing dismally last year – he did not even get a call back in the early stages – Ntshingila would give up, but the setback only got him hungrier. That hunger saw him return to the MTV VJ search with a vengeance and many people suddenly took notice.
“I had Scoop (Siya Ngwekazi) come to me and say that he liked my style and thought I reminded him of a younger version of himself,” said Ntshingila.
Interestingly, Ngwekazi also told the young wide-eyed Ntshingila that he too auditioned for the MTV VJ search in the year that Sizwe Dhlomo won, only to come second.
“It meant a lot to me for him to even step up to me and tell me that he liked how I did things. He is one of my idols and it was reassuring to get his approval,” said Ntshingila.
This boost of confidence from Ngwekazi, and the army of supporters that he garnered along the way, gave Ntshingila the strength he needed to make it past his competition, Cyprian Ndlovu and Tsholo Semenya.
“This is a dream come true for me. I will never forget what Bonang said to me once, something along the lines of there is no greater feeling than when you do what you want and people are willing to pay you for it. This is where I am at right now,” he said ecstatically.
While Ntshingila’s win was an incredible ride through the competition, it had its serious moments before the final announcement was made.
“I was chilled throughout the day and I did what I felt was my best, but when Nomuzi (Mabena) was holding the envelope she took her time to announce the winner and I started getting nervous. I knew that in that envelope was the name of one person and this was it.
“This was the end of all that we had worked hard for and there were no retakes,” he said.
The announcement was made, Ntshingila went ballistic and instantly started saying how grateful he was to be the winner and then thanked all those who had voted for him.
“There are a lot of people I didn’t thank on that night. I want to thank Nhlanhla Nciza, for picking me out of the contestants as his favourite. I want to thank Bonang, whom I could not find to thank on the night it happened because the opportunity just never came.
“Shout out to Sizwe and Joey (Rasdien) for mentoring me and making me believe I could do it. I could not have done it without these people,” he said.
As part of the deal, Ntshingila won a cool Citroën DS3 Cabrio worth R 315 000 and he will host his own weekly music show on MTV Base, The Official SA Top 10!, from November 1.
• Catch the final episode of MTV Base VJ Search Brought To You By Citroën DS3 Cabrio tomorrow on MTV Base (DStv channel 322) at 5pm.